This is a recipe that I’ve been just itching to get up on here and share with you guys recently because it’s one that I’ve been literally obsessing over in my own personal kitchen and cook for myself on a regular basis. I was doing the weekly food shop in my local Sainsbury’s the other day and came across this red lentil pasta and thought that I would pick some up and have a little try! I wanted to start off this post by mentioning this because I’m now pretty hooked on the stuff and would definitely recommend the product!
Now, I’m not saying that there’s anything wrong with eating normal pasta however, I generally try to avoid gluten as I suffer from IBS flare ups, so I just find that this is something that helps to keep me feeling a little better gut health wise. I do have a variation of gluten free pastas in my cupboard, but I do sometimes find it a little bit difficult to find brands that I really love. It could just be me, but I find that lots of gluten free pastas don’t tend to hold that al dente texture and sometimes turn out a bit soggy.. not ideal! This red lentil pasta is actually the opposite to this, but I really enjoy my pasta super al dente! Another thing that I love about it, is that it’s made entirely of red lentil flour and nothing else! It’s naturally gluten and grain free and also packed with plant based protein! There’s actually almost 20g of vegan protein per serving of pasta- which I think it’s pretty incredible if you ask me! I know lots of people are curious about protein on a vegan diet (I’m not personally vegan) and things like this make it SO simple to get a decent serving of protein into a dish without having to supplement with protein powder for every meal! Again, nothing wrong with protein powders in my opinion, but I try and only have one serving per day in general.
So.. now we’ve got the pasta pretty much covered, we can now move onto the sauce! You can do this one of two ways really: you could either whip up your own vegan cheese sauce or to keep things super simple like I have here; use a vegan cream cheese. The main idea of this recipe, is to provide you with something that’s so quick and simple to whip up on a weeknight, for guests, working lunch or if you’re at uni. It’s generally quite inexpensive to make and is a delicious plant based alternative to a classic creamy pasta dish. I also think that recipes like these are great for introducing people to more plant based dishes without having to serve them a giant pile of salad leaves. This doesn’t necessarily scream vegan and I bet a lot of people actually wouldn’t guess that it’s completely dairy free! I’ve used a dairy free cream cheese from a brand called KOKO Dairy free, which has a nice mild flavour and I picked this up in Waitrose, so I would expect that it’s pretty widely available. It’s great on toast, sandwiches, sauces, baked potatoes, as a dip or however else you would normally eat cream cheese. I’m always slightly sceptical when it comes to cheese alternatives and it’s taken me a lot of trial and error to discover products that I actually really love. Another cheese alternative that I would recommend is the Vio Life Mozarella block style cheese. This too has a nice mild taste and great texture for melting to make home made pizza dishes!
The main purpose of this recipe for me is to demonstrate just how easy it can be to create really quick, delicious, healthy and hearty feeling meals. This is a classic comforting dish for me, yet is still really healthy, not super high calorie and tastes delicious! You don’t have to compromise on flavour or your favourite meals when eating healthily or plant based. You can still enjoy pasta and creamy sauces whilst living both of these lifestyles! Oh and another thing that I forgot to mention earlier; this recipe is actually written for one serving.. which is slightly unusual for me but, I have done this on purpose! Personally for my boyfriend and I, eating some meals together can be a little bit difficult as he’s usually at work most evenings. I know that when cooking for only one, this can be a bit of a challenge for some people and sometimes a little bit demotivating. It’s pretty easy to not feel like making much effort when cooking for only yourself and can be tempting to order in or buy lots of quick ready meals. HOWEVER, like I’ve said, this is SO quick and simple to make AND the recipe is designed for one, so no excuses not to give this one a try! I’d love to know what you think if you do try it, so leave a comment down bellow!
Vegan Creamy Mushroom Pasta
- Cook the pasta according the instructions on the packet.
- Rise the mushrooms and slice in half.
- Heat the coconut oil in a frying pan over a medium heat and crush in the garlic clove.
- Add the mushrooms and sauté these until nice and golden and starting to crisp at the edges.
- Once the pasta is cooked, drain this then add to the pan along with the cream cheese and spinach. Gently stir everything together to melt the cheese into the pasta and wilt the spinach.
- Season to taste with salt and pepper then serve and tuck in!